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The Crown Estate is a diverse portfolio of UK buildings, shoreline, seabed, forestry, agriculture and common land that generates valuable revenue for the government each year – and it has recently made one of its biggest purchases to date. 2013 saw the Crown Estate bank £267.1 million to the treasury from its portfolio with a capital value of £9.9 billion, and a property value of £9.4 billion.
The opportunity to purchase the Pollen Estate in Mayfair, London from the Church of England was one many investors did not want to miss; with global marketing in the form of almost 1000 brochures and 100’s of presentations there were many interested parties helping to push up the cost of the asset with 86 parties showing serious interest. The Crowns Estate teamed up with Norges Bank Investment Management (for a 64% stake in the Pollen Estate) and made an offer of £381 million which was enough to secure the asset.
Jones Lang LaSalle were appointed to manage the sale of The Pollen Estate which dates back to June 29th 1622! William Maddox bought the freehold of 35 acres of undeveloped land for £1,450, which now comprises Great Marlborough Street, Pollen Street, St Georges Street and Dering Street. This land was developed in the 17th and 18th centuries creating a lot of the ‘Mayfair’ we know today. The Pollen Estate now comprises mostly of retail, office and mix – use developments.
NBIM and the Crown Estate have been in partnership before where they purchased the Entire Regent Street Estate, the Crown Estate hold a stake of 25% with NBIM holding the remainder. Rhodri Mason, agent at Morgan Pryce states that, “both parties clearly recognise the long term benefits of owning an asset such as the Pollen Estate, the success of the West End has been strongly linked to key streets that everyone knows, such as Savile Row, Regent Street and Cork Street thus showing their value.”
This news was brought to you by Morgan Pryce, a specialist tenant acquisition agent with offices in Oxford Circus and the City. Morgan Pryce specialises in search, negotiation and project management and works exclusively for tenants.